[imagesource: AP Photo/Evan Vucci]
Donald Trump has lived a life of absolute privilege, and used lawsuits and the threat of legal action to silence many who have taken him on.
However, as the country he currently governs continues to count the votes that its citizens legally cast, and his lead in key states comes under threat, he has resorted to the behaviour that everybody knew was coming.
He’s been crying foul for months, setting the scene for this, and last night he again delivered.
Before we get to that, let’s see his supporters gathering to chant ‘stop the vote’, and also ‘count the votes’, depending on how their man is doing:
It would be laughable if it wasn’t so sad.
And please, stop with the ‘138 000 votes in Michigan’ nonsense – this has been debunked.
Back to last night, and Trump’s address from the White House, where he illegitimately declared victory in the presidential election for the second time this week.
He broke out all of his usual baseless claims, without presenting a shred of evidence, and media outlets carrying the address live weren’t having it.
This from the Guardian:
Several US news networks cut their feeds of the 16 minute speech, and numerous Republicans condemned the many falsehoods proclaimed in it.
MSNBC halted its live stream of the speech just a few minutes in…
Here’s the moment host Brian Williams halted the broadcast of that live address:
It was a similar state of affairs on CNBC, where host Shep Smith, who was formerly with Fox News, also pointed out the dangerous misinformation:
President Trump just spoke at the White House, as key states continue to count votes.
Shep has the facts: “What the President of the United States is saying, in large part, is absolutely untrue.” #Election2020 https://t.co/E6DBt6OodD pic.twitter.com/HVa87qUCzB
— The News with Shepard Smith (@thenewsoncnbc) November 6, 2020
The US loves to preach to other countries about how they should handle a free and fair election, and now it’s come full circle:
“Trump created an impression of refusing to commit to a peaceful transfer of power, claiming the electoral process was systematically rigged … without presenting ANY substantial evidence of systematic malfeasance and contradicting election officials at ALL levels.”
— Brett McGurk (@brett_mcgurk) November 5, 2020
Trump speaking from the White House was actually something that those around him had tried to discourage, as the president’s mood soured and he started losing the plot.
Here’s the Washington Post:
“STOP THE COUNT,” Trump bellowed on Twitter, a missive he quickly retweeted just over an hour later. “ANY VOTE THAT CAME IN AFTER ELECTION DAY WILL NOT BE COUNTED!” he added.
The only problem: If the vote-counting stopped at that moment, Trump would lose.
Trump’s senior advisers intervened, explaining to the president that he needed to be more precise about just which vote counts he wanted halted…
And so, shortly after noon Thursday, Trump blasted out the message he had workshopped with advisers: “STOP THE FRAUD!”
As results continued to turn against him, Trump was desperate for some on-screen time, again defying advice from those around him:
A senior campaign official said Thursday night’s appearance was the kind of news conference they wanted to avoid…
Two senior campaign officials said they expected a public-relations effort as well as a legal operation over voter fraud to continue for days, if not weeks. They began asking donors to give large checks for the effort, according to two people familiar with the effort…
“The ballgame is not over but it’s fading away from Trump a lot,” [Dan Eberhart, a Republican donor] said. “It could be a fitting end to Trump. He was so litigious for his business career, and he might go down in a torrent of lawsuits.”
After close to four years in office, with incessant whining about how tough he has had it, we know the baseless claims will accelerate with great speed as more votes are tallied.
Even when you know it’s coming, it’s still quite something to see democracy in the land of the free in such a dire state.
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